George Floyd Protests Cause Nearly $158,000 in Ohio Statehouse Damages

  Repairing damage to the Ohio Statehouse and surrounding Capitol Square that occurred during protests against racial injustice will cost about $158,000, according to the board that oversees the property. That tally from protests in Columbus between May 28 and June 18 doesn’t include repairs for damage on other state…

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The Supreme Court Keeps Trump Taxes Private for Now

Rejecting President Donald Trump’s complaints that he’s being harassed, the Supreme Court ruled Thursday in favor of a New York prosecutor’s demands for the billionaire president’s tax records. But in good political news for Trump, his taxes and other financial records almost certainly will be kept out of the public eye at least until after the November election.

In a separate case, the justices kept a hold on banking and other documents about Trump, family members and his businesses that Congress has been seeking for more than a year. The court said that while Congress has significant power to demand the president’s personal information, it is not limitless.

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Commentary: Big Philanthropy and the Battle Against ‘Systemic Racism’

Who would have thought the Gates Foundation would endorse tearing down statues of Christopher Columbus, Ulysses S. Grant, George Washington, and other dead white men?

Sure, you won’t find “mob violence,” “vandalism,” or “destruction of public property” in any grant applications, but the paroxysms of rage racking our country and the desire to rip racism from America by root and branch is the end-product of Big Philanthropy’s governing ideology.

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US Sanctions Chinese Officials Over Repression of Minorities

The United States on Thursday imposed sanctions on three senior officials of the Chinese Communist Party, including a member of the ruling Politburo, for alleged human rights abuses targeting ethnic and religious minorities that China has detained in the western part of the country.

The decision to bar these senior officials from entering the U.S. is the latest of a series of actions the Trump administration has taken against China as relations deteriorate over the coronavirus pandemic, human rights, Hong Kong and trade. Just a day earlier, the administration had announced visa bans against officials deemed responsible for barring foreigners’ access to Tibet. Thursday’s step, however, hits a more senior level of leadership and is likely to draw a harsh response from Beijing.

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Missing Seoul Mayor’s Body Found After Massive Search

The missing mayor of South Korea’s capital, reportedly embroiled in sexual harassment allegations, was found dead early Friday, more than half a day after giving his daughter a will-like message and then leaving home, police said.

Police said they located Park Won-soon’s body near a traditional restaurant in wooded hills in northern Seoul, more than seven hours after they launched a massive search for him.

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USDA: Error Rate in National Food Stamp Program Increases in 2019

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is reporting an error rate of 7.36 percent for its Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for fiscal year 2019.

Despite the error rate, and after state government shutdowns over the coronavirus, the federal government significantly extended emergency SNAP funding for states to distribute.

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Small Business Administration Gave Loans to Multi-Million Dollar Companies

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the U.S. Treasury Department this week released the names of 4.9 million Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan recipient businesses and nonprofits that received $150,000 or more.

The mostly forgivable PPP loans were funded through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

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Buckeye Institute Sues Over Law Allowing Columbus to Collect Income Taxes From Commuters Despite Emergency Order Preventing Them from Working in the City

The Buckeye Institute said that it and three employees filed a lawsuit over the taxing of workers’ income in Columbus since they do not live in the city and were not allowed to work there during Ohio’s Stay-at-Home order.

The lawsuit, which is available here, was filed in the Court of Common Pleas in Franklin County.

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Weekly Jobless Claims Lower Than Expected at 1.3 Million

Jobless claims for the past week were lower than economists had predicted as workers begin returning to their jobs, according to data from the Labor Department shows.

The total number for jobless claims for the week ending in July 4 was 1.3 million, according to the Labor Department data, which is 99,000 fewer claims than the previous week. Economists surveyed by Down Jones had predicted 1.39 million jobless claims, according to CNBC.

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In a 7-2 Decision, Supreme Court Says Congress Can’t Get Trump Records – For Now

The Supreme Court on Thursday kept a hold on President Donald Trump’s financial records that Congress has been seeking for more than a year. The ruling returns the case to lower courts, with no clear prospect for when the case might ultimately be resolved.

The 7-2 outcome is at least a short-term victory for Trump, who has strenuously sought to keep his financial records private.

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Harvard, MIT Sue to Block ICE Rule on International Students

Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology filed a federal lawsuit Wednesday challenging the Trump administration’s decision to bar international students from staying in the U.S. if they take classes entirely online this fall.

The lawsuit, filed in Boston’s federal court, seeks to prevent federal immigration authorities from enforcing the rule. The universities contend that the directive violates the Administrative Procedures Act because officials failed to offer a reasonable basis justifying the policy and because the public was not given notice to comment on it.

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Commentary: A Reign of Error

At the end of The Unheavenly City: The Nature and the Future of Our Urban Crisis (1968), Edward Banfield presents a prospect regarding race relations that seems to have been fulfilled since his tumultuous years and ours: a reign of error.

Let me set the stage. America had become the wealthiest nation in the history of the world, and the wealth was making its way to the lower classes also. Thus the main “accidental factor” that had locked Americans in a vicious cycle of white discrimination and prejudice on one side and low standards and attainments for blacks on the other would be largely alleviated. Such prejudice, said Banfield, writing during the years of urban riots, was already in decline.

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Brooks Brothers Files for Bankruptcy After 202 Years of Business

Brooks Brothers, one of the United States’ oldest and most prestigious retailers, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Wednesday after 202 years, CNBC reported.

The retailer, credited with dressing 40 U.S. presidents since its founding in 1818, had already been burdened with rising rent when it was devastated by the coronavirus pandemic, which sunk the company’s potential sale, according to CNBC.

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Kanye Wests Says White Supremacists Doing ‘Devil’s Work’ Brought Planned Parenthoods in Cities

White supremacists placed Planned Parenthood clinics inside cities to “do the Devil’s work,” according to rapper and recently-declared presidential candidate Kanye West.

West, who announced his presidential bid July 4, spoke out regarding his political beliefs in an interview with Forbes where he discussed his disillusionment with President Donald Trump, his political beliefs, and his hopes for a West presidency.

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SCOTUS Rules in Favor of Catholic Nuns, Upholds Conscience Exemptions for Birth Control Mandate

The United States Supreme Court ruled to uphold conscience exemptions from former President Barack Obama’s birth control mandate in a victory for the Little Sisters of the Poor.

SCOTUS ruled 7-2 that the Catholic nuns are exempt from Obama’s contraceptive mandate. 

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Exhausted Cities Face Another Challenge: A Surge in Violence

Still reeling from the coronavirus pandemic and street protests over the police killing of George Floyd, exhausted cities around the nation are facing yet another challenge: a surge in shootings that has left dozens dead, including young children.

The spike defies easy explanation, experts say, pointing to the toxic mix of issues facing America in 2020: an unemployment rate not seen in a generation, a pandemic that has killed more than 130,000 people, stay-at-home orders, rising anger over police brutality, intense stress, even the weather.

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All-Mail Voting Threatens Election Security, Study Finds

Mandatory voting by mail would undermine election security and endanger Americans’ right to have their votes counted, according to a report released Tuesday by the Honest Elections Project, a voter integrity group.

The report comes on the heels of a vote-by-mail scandal in Paterson, New Jersey, where 1 in 5 votes were disqualified.

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Commentary: Dismantling America Without a Replacement

Calls to dismantle this group or that institution have become the topic du jour in American politics. It started with police departments and the criminal justice system, then it spread to museums, and now one Democratic congresswoman is raising the bar on a logarithmic scale.

In a Tuesday press conference devoted to discussing America’s alleged systemic racism, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, D-MN, called for dismantling “the whole system of oppression wherever we find it.”

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United Will Warn 36,000 Workers They Could be Laid Off

United Airlines is warning 36,000 employees – nearly half its U.S. staff – they could be furloughed in October, the clearest signal yet of how deeply the virus pandemic is hurting the airline industry.

The outlook for a recovery in air travel has dimmed in just the past two weeks, as infection rates rise in much of the U.S. and some states impose new quarantine requirements on travelers.

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Sen. Blackburn Says Rep. Ilhan Omar Should Resign After Calling for Dismantling of U.S. Economic, Political Systems

U.S. Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) said U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) should resign after the representative called for the “dismantling” of the U.S. “economy and political systems.”

Omar made the remark during a speech Tuesday to the Minnesota People of Color and Indigenous Caucus, The Daily Wire reported.

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Gov. DeWine Determines Seven Ohio Counties Must Wear Face Coverings in Public

Gov. Mike DeWine announced this week seven counties in Ohio will start wearing face coverings in public as the coronavirus cases continue to surge in the state.

Counties that need to follow this mandate are currently in Red Alert Level 3 Public Health Emergency, according to DeWine’s press release.

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Ohio Town Announces It’s a ‘Sanctuary City’ for Historical Statues

The manager of a small town in Ohio has declared his municipality a “sanctuary city” for statues being toppled in other parts of the country.

A proclamation signed July 4 by Newton Falls City Manager David Lynch declares that monuments of the Founding Fathers and others will find safety in Newton Falls.

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Commentary: Point of No Return

Donald Trump gave the greatest speech of his career on Friday night at Mount Rushmore, an address that will soon take on historic importance. The president has now forced his opponents out of their fetid hothouse of snobbery, humbug, and subversion. In the process he has forced the Bush Republicans, who led the party between the retirement of Ronald Reagan and the rise of Donald Trump, to show their colors.

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Protective Gear for Medical Workers Begins to Run Low Again

The personal protective gear that was in dangerously short supply during the early weeks of the coronavirus crisis in the U.S. is running low again as the virus resumes its rapid spread and the number of hospitalized patients climbs.

A national nursing union is concerned that gear has to be reused. A doctors association warns that physicians’ offices are closed because they cannot get masks and other supplies. And Democratic members of Congress are pushing the Trump administration to devise a national strategy to acquire and distribute gear in anticipation of the crisis worsening into the fall.

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After Over a Month of Violent Rioting in Portland, Border Patrol Called in to Restore Order

After violent antifa riots were allowed to rock downtown Portland, Oregon, for over a month, Border Patrol agents over the holiday weekend were finally deployed to restore order.

Acting Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Mark Morgan expressed frustration over the situation on Fox News Sunday: “Where are the local political leaders?” he asked. “These are not protesters, these are criminals.”

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Paycheck Protection Program Is Supporting More Than 51 Million Small Business Jobs, Trump Administration Announces

The $670 billion Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has supported more than 51 million jobs since its launch in April, the Treasury Department and Small Business Administration announced Monday as it released information on 4.9 million loans disbursed by the program.

“The PPP is providing much-needed relief to millions of American small businesses, supporting more than 51 million jobs and over 80 percent of all small business employees, who are the drivers of economic growth in our country,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement Monday.

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House Democrats’ Funding Bill Includes Provision to Remove Confederate Statues

Confederate statues would be removed from the Capitol under a provision included in the Democrat House Appropriations Committee’s 2021 draft budget bill released Monday.

The nearly $4.2 billion funding proposal would mandate the removal of monuments to Confederate generals and would also call into question those statues of people who have “unambiguous records of racial intolerance,” according to a press release from the Appropriations Committee.

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Millions of Potential Coronavirus Vaccine Doses Already Being Made, NIH Director Says

Millions of coronavirus vaccine doses are being manufactured, even before testing has been completed, the National Institutes of Health director said in an interview recently.

Doses of potential vaccines are being made to shorten the time it traditionally takes to develop a drug for public use, director Dr. Francis Collins told Intelligencer. Collins said he is “guardedly optimistic” that at least one vaccine will pass through the large phase of trials by December.

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Gov. Cuomo’s Order Sent More Than 6,000 Coronavirus Patients into Nursing Homes, Officials Say

Democratic New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s orders sent more than 6,300 coronavirus patients to nursing homes at the height of the pandemic, new numbers from state officials show.

Thousands of elderly coronavirus patients died after Cuomo issued an order March 25 mandating assisted-living facilities admit coronavirus patients, and state officials are now reporting that the number of admitted carriers is even higher than previous estimates.

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Brazil’s President Bolsonaro Tests Positive for COVID-19

Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro said Tuesday he has tested positive for COVID-19 after months of downplaying the coronavirus’s severity while deaths mounted rapidly inside the country.

The 65-year-old populist who has been known to mingle in crowds without covering his face confirmed the results while wearing a mask and speaking to reporters huddled close in front of him in the capital, Brasilia. He said he is taking hydroxychloroquine, the anti-malaria drug that has not been proven effective against COVID-19.

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Richmond Removes Statue of Confederate Gen. J.E.B. Stuart

Work crews on Tuesday took down a monument to Confederate Gen. J.E.B. Stuart, the third major statue to be cleared away in less than a week as the Confederacy’s former capital rushes to remove symbols of oppression in response to protests against police brutality and racism.

As a crowd cheered, crews strapped the huge bronze equestrian statue in harnesses and used a crane to lift it from its granite base to be trucked away. Some in the crowd chanted “Black Lives Matter” after the statue was removed. One person sang, “Na na na na, na na na na, hey hey, goodbye.”

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Commentary: Supreme Court Rules Right in Case About Soros-Backed Organization Wanting US Foreign Aid to Go to Anti-American Groups

The Supreme Court has upheld the right of the United States government to distribute aid to foreign organizations in accordance with American interests. The June 29 decision in Agency for International Development v. Alliance for Open Society International represents a significant win for the protection of American freedoms.

The case affirms a vital principle of U.S. foreign involvement, one dear to the heart of the American taxpayer—U.S. money spent abroad must support U.S. interests and priorities. If a foreign organization wants our money, it cannot violate American positions.

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State Lawmaker Wants to Give Attorney General Power to Prosecute Vandalism on State Property

A state lawmaker has proposed a bill to give the state attorney general the authority to investigate and prosecute vandalism on state property, including the Ohio statehouse.

Republican state lawmakers have expressed their frustration as protesters in downtown Columbus vandalized the Ohio Statehouse in recent weeks. In announcing his proposal, state Rep. Jeff LaRe, R-Violet Township, cited a WBNS-TV report that the Columbus city prosecutor dismissed at least 59 charges stemming from the recent protests.

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Military’s Top Catholic Prelate: Navy’s Indoor Religious Services Ban ‘Odious’

The leader of the Archdiocese for the Military Services compared the Navy’s banning sailors from attending religious services to the treatment of the Catholics in 17th century Japan depicted in the movie “Silence.”

“The persecution was systematic and destined to eradicate the faith from the islands,” wrote Archbishop Timothy P. Broglio, who has led the Catholic military chaplaincy and its programs since 2008, in a public letter posted Sunday.

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Abolitionist, Advisor to President Abraham Lincoln – Frederick Douglass Statue Vandalized in New York Park

Police in Rochester were trying to determine Monday who ripped a statue of abolitionist Frederick Douglass from its base on the anniversary of one of his most famous speeches, delivered in the upstate New York city in 1852.

The statue of Douglass was taken on Sunday from Maplewood Park, a site along the Underground Railroad where Douglass and Harriet Tubman helped shuttle slaves to freedom. The statue was found at the brink of the Genesee River gorge about 50 feet from its pedestal, police said. There was damage to the base and a finger.

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Commentary: Joe Biden’s Loyalty Is with China, Not America

by Charles Misfud   While our loyalty as Americans is with God and our country, Joe Biden’s loyalty is with China. During his decades in the U.S. Senate and eight years as vice president, Biden consistently supported globalist policies that sent millions of blue collar American jobs to China. In…

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Commentary: 2020 Will Be the Civil War Election

As the summer of our discontent drags on, the fall of 2020 will bring with it either the fall of America or its rise from the ashes. This Independence Day, the battle lines were drawn unambiguously, and the fate of our nation truly does rest on the decision of the American voters in November.

It is now a commonplace that every election of our recent history is “the most important” election ever – and it may often seem there is no reason for this other than to drive up voter enthusiasm and campaign contributions. Of course, each time, the candidates go on the next cycle just four years later, “No, this time it really is the most important election ever!”

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Slow Processing, Lost Markets Mean New Challenges for Livestock Farmers

The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on many sectors of the economy and livestock farming is one of them.

Closures of public spaces such as schools, restaurants, bars, and hotels mean decreased demand for meat products. In addition, outbreaks of coronavirus-caused illness at meatpacking plants caused some large operations to shut down temporarily, swamping small mom-and-pop operations that are now booked into spring 2021.

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Gov. DeWine’s Company, Which Owns a Minor Baseball Team in North Carolina, Gets Loan from Federal Virus Aid Program

A company partly owned by Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine is among those that received loans from a $600 billion-plus coronavirus aid program.

The data released Monday shows DeWine Seeds-Silver Dollar Baseball received a loan under the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program for a range of $150,000 to $350,000.

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Wall Street Rises Again, Joins Worldwide Upswell for Markets

New York Stock Exchange

Wall Street joined a worldwide upswell by markets on Monday, as stocks push higher on hopes that the economy can continue its dramatic turnaround despite all the challenges ahead.

The S&P 500 was 1.59% higher in afternoon trading, following up on similar gains in Europe and Asia. The headliner was China’s market, which leaped 5.7% for its biggest gain since 2015, when it was in the midst of a bubble bursting. Treasury yields also climbed in a signal of rising optimism after reports detailed improvements in the U.S. and European economies.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 459 points, or 1.78%, at 26,287. The biggest companies once again led the way, and strength for Apple, Amazon and other tech-oriented titans helped push the Nasdaq composite up 2.21% toward another record.

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Justices Rule 9-0: States Can Bind Presidential Electors’ Votes

In a decision flavored with references to “Hamilton” and “Veep,” the Supreme Court ruled unanimously Monday that states can require presidential electors to back their states’ popular vote winner in the Electoral College.

The ruling, in cases in Washington state and Colorado just under four months before the 2020 election, leaves in place laws in 32 states and the District of Columbia that bind electors to vote for the popular-vote winner, as electors almost always do anyway.

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Dave Yost Seeks Public’s Input on Whether Google Uses ‘Deceptive Sales Practices’

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said he wants the public to weigh in on the question of whether internet search engines should be “allowed to favor their own products and services in search results.”

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Commentary: Playing the Russia Card

America was at a historic crossroads in 1971. The war in Vietnam increasingly was seen as unwinnable, while triggering ongoing unrest in cities and college campuses across the nation. The economy was challenged with rising inflation and rising trade deficits. In August 1971, the British ambassador turned up at the Treasury Department to request that $3 billion be converted into gold. That same week, President Nixon ordered a freeze on all prices and wages in the United States.

In the Communist world, America’s problems were trumpeted as the inevitable collapse of capitalist imperialism. Russia and China stood triumphant over a declining West. And what did Nixon do? He stunned the world by traveling to China. His goal: To drive a wedge between the two Communist superpowers.

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Kanye West Says He’s ‘Running For President,’ Picks Up Elon Musk’s Endorsement

by Mary Rose Corkery   Kanye West said he’s “running for president” on Saturday. “We must realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States,” West wrote on Twitter Saturday. We must now realize the…

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